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Updated Apr 10, 2013 - 10:59 am

Phoenix police union rep in favor of universal background checks

PHOENIX -- Former Phoenix Police officer Levi Bolton is a supporter of universal background checks but also believes that those checks are not the ultimate answer to stopping gun violence.

Bolton was on the force for 32 years and represents 13,000 Arizona police officers as executive director of the the local law enforcement association. Closing the so-called gun show loophole with background checks is not the ultimate answer to stopping gun violence, he said.

"There's no single thing we can do to bring about the kind of overall safety that is being envisioned or talked about. While it's lofty and something we should be working toward, I don't know practically how you would get there."

Bolton said someone who is hell-bent on carrying out an act of gun violence will do just that, regardless of tougher gun laws.

"The one dynamic that no one wants to talk about is most of these people came there to die. So what deterrent can you impose when someone came there knowing that they would be among the casualties and that was part of the equation."

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About the Author


Position: Senior News Reporter. Started with KTAR July 4, 1999.

Favorite spots in Arizona: Pinetop-Lakeside, Alpine, Greer.

Have covered some of the biggest stories in Arizona including nine of the top 10 largest wildfires in state history. The Wallow Fire in 2011 became the largest fire in state history. Rodeo-Chediski Fire in June 2002, which is the second largest fire in Arizona. Covered the Yarnell Hill Tragedy in June 2013 that left 19 Granite Mountain Hotshots dead.

Favorite movies: True Grit, both 1969 John Wayne classic and the remake with Jeff Bridges and Lonesome Dove.

Sports Teams: Washington State University Cougars, Texas Longhorns, The University of Montana Grizzlies.

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